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Frida Kahlo is one a famous, mexican artist that has inspired millions with her unique artwork style. But she is also famous of other reasons too. She was influential because of her being proud of her mexican roots, she contracted illnesses, and her views on the American social classes.
In 1927, she joined the Mexican Communist Party where she met some prominent figures like Julio Antonio Mella and Diego Rivera, which she would later on marry and divorce. In the article “Artists: Frida Kahlo”, it talks about how Frida has always felt proud of her roots and began to outwardly demonstrating her pride in her Mexican heritage. “She clothed herself in traditional Tehuana dresses, colorful embroidered tops and long flowing skirts, native to the state of Oaxaca. Matilde, Frida’s mother, was a native of Tehuana. Frida strongly identified with Tehuana’s famed matriarchal society. This shift and the flamboyant flavor of Mexican culture colored Frida’s style of painting and shaped how the world would soon come to know her and her work.”
Frida’s life was filled with illnesses and accidents. At age 6, she contracted polio which made on leg thinner than the other. However, she stilled played sports at school despite her leg. In 1925, she was hit by a trolley car where she was impaled by a metal rod that pierced her back and broke her pelvis. Around 1940 she had 2 bone graft surgeries in her spine but she still remained immobile. And in her final years, her leg was amputated due to gangrene, and fell into depression. Despite of all this, she continued to paint through all of this. She would even incorporate all of her misfortune into her paintings, which have inspired many.
She had visited the U.S. when her husband at the time was hired to paint murals. This gave Frida the chance to experience some of America’s culture and social classes. But she had disapproved many aspects of american life. She had explained that the rich would envelope themselves in their golden chambers while the hungry thirsted for basic necessities. She wrote, “This upper class is disgusting and I’m furious at all these rich people here, having seen thousands of people in abject squalor.” She did not enjoy spending time in the social circles of which she was a part, but instead took to developing her style of painting.
Frida’s legacy continues to this day, and her fame only continues to grow. She is recognized as one of Mexico’s most famous artists and figures and is known worldwide for her stirring self-portraits, her views on the American society, the illnesses she had contracted, her being proud of who she was. “Frida was a resilient trailblazer who endured excruciating pain, both physically and emotionally, and all the while built her legacy.”
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